WhatsApp now lets you delete sent messages from the recipient’s phones, albeit within a short space of time. This was a long-awaited feature that everyone hoped would come.

Currently, when you delete a message it only disappears from your phone. This means the recipient can still view the erratic message ;-). With the new feature, both the sender and the recipient’s copies of the message will be deleted.

In effect, Whatsapp does not make the message vanish. Instead, they replace it with a notification showing that a message has been removed. You can check out the changes on their FAQ page.

To delete messages for everyone

Deleting messages for everyone allows you to delete specific messages you have sent to either a group or an individual chat. This is particularly useful if you sent a message to the wrong chat or if the message you sent contains a mistake.

Messages you successfully delete for everyone will be replaced with “This message was deleted” in your recipients’ chats (*). Similarly, if you see “This message was deleted” in a chat, it means that the sender deleted their message for everyone.

You can only delete messages for everyone for up to seven minutes after sending. Once seven minutes have passed, there is no way to delete messages for everyone.

You can now live in peace, knowing there is no more “Sorry, wrong group” texts. Just delete it. Even though the grace period is short, in most cases you will have noticed the typo already.

Do not get too excited, though. All the participants in the conversation need to be on the latest version of the application. If not, then you are out of luck. This will, however, become irrelevant as more people update. Also important to note, you will not be notified if the message is not successfully removed from all the recipients.

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